Wednesday, October 12, 2011


My life was filled with holes, holes that kept getting bigger. So big, I was in danger of falling through.

From the outside, it didn’t look that way. I was a senior in college. I’d been treasurer and president of my fraternity. I was managing editor of the college newspaper. Named to the national men’s leadership fraternity and Who’s Who. I had achieved all of the things I had set out to achieve my freshman year, and I had gone beyond that.

I had all the things I thought could fill the emptiness. But the holes were growing bigger.

I had sought and gained all the things my natural self wanted and needed – awards and recognition; honors and accolades. My natural self should have been more than satisfied. Instead, it craved more, and I didn’t have more. Nothing was left.

Except those holes.

In Mere Christianity, C.S. Lewis talks about the demands of the natural self: “Make no mistake: if you are really going to try to meet all the demands made on the natural self, it will not have enough left over to live on.”

What I learned – what several people helped me see – was that the natural self had to die. And I was being chased down for that to start happening. As Lewis says, “Christ says ‘Give me All. I don’t want so much of your time and so much of your money and so much of your work: I want You. I have not come to torment your natural self, but to kill it.’”

Reading that in Mere Christianity is reading more than one chapter of my life story. The process that started in late January of 1973 in a college lecture hall didn’t turn me into a cult-like clone. Just the opposite began happening: I began to break free of what the culture and my natural self told me were “the good things in life.” I began to understand the holes for what they were. I began to see that the holes couldn’t be filled with what I had been filling them with.

I began to see that the holes were a fraud I had perpetrated upon myself.

Led by Jason Stayszsen and Sarah Salter, we’ve been discussing Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis. To see more posts on this week’s chapter, “Is Christianity Hard or Easy,” please visit Jason at Connecting to Impact.


moondustwriter said...

I love C.S. Lewis
There is nothing "Mere" about being a follower of Christ- is there?
glad for the call He has made to all of us

JofIndia said...

That's the first time I've seen how the word "cult" is derived from "culture".
Thanks for making it apparent, Glynn. The relationship is more than linguistic..

S. Etole said...

What a gift to have realized that at such a young age.

Anonymous said...

I like your statement about "cult-like clones" because it's such an important distinction. It looks like bondage from the outside, but inside, it's a spacious place of freedom. Only way to know is to experience it. Thanks Glynn.

Anonymous said...

interesting about the word culture, which meant "the tilling of the land", "a cultivating agriculture", figurative sense "care, culture, an honoring", from "tend, guard, cultivate, till".

cult - originally "tended, cultivated, ..."to till"

which is what man must do, since we do not live in the garden of eden.

Lewis said in this chapter, "Cutting grass may keep it short: but I shall still produce grass and no wheat. If i want to produce wheat, the change must go deeper than the surface. I must be ploughed up and re-sown."